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Hackensack Physician-Hospital Alliance Accountable Care Organization to participate as a Medicare Shared Savings Program Accountable Care Organization

April 10, 2012 11:37 AM


Voluntary, New Care Coordination Program Created to Offer High Quality Service and Care to Beneficiaries through Partnership with Medicare

Hackensack Physician-Hospital Alliance ACO, LLC, today announced it has been selected to participate in the Medicare Shared Savings Program (Shared Savings Program) Accountable Care Organization (ACO), a multifaceted new program sponsored by the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS).Through the Shared Savings Program, Hackensack Physician-Hospital Alliance ACO will work with CMS to provide Medicare fee-for-service beneficiaries with high quality service and care, while reducing the growth in Medicare expenditures through enhanced care coordination.

“The entire medical center team along with the Hackensack Physician-Hospital Alliance ACO development team is thrilled that our application has been accepted,” said Robert C. Garrett, president and chief executive officer of HackensackUMC. “Coordination of care and efficient use of resources have been a focal point for our medical center, and we look forward to continuing this commitment through our newly formed ACO.”

The Shared Savings Program will reward ACOs that lower the rate of growth in health care costs for Medicare beneficiaries while meeting performance standards on quality of care and putting patients first. ACOs are groups of doctors and other health care providers working together to provide high quality service and care for their patients. Provider participation in an ACO is purely voluntary and Medicare beneficiaries retain their current ability to seek treatment from any provider they wish. CMS will use robust quality measures to reward ACOs, including Hackensack Physician-Hospital Alliance ACO, for providing Medicare beneficiaries with a positive patient experience and better health outcomes, while also reducing growth in Medicare expenditures for the same patient population.

"Accountable Care Organizations will improve coordination and communication among physicians and other providers which will help improve care and lower costs for Medicare beneficiaries,” said Marilyn B. Tavenner, acting administrator of the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services.  “We are excited to welcome Hackensack Physician-Hospital Alliance ACOas a partner with Medicare and look forward to working with them to improve care for Medicare beneficiaries in New Jersey and New York."

Under the Shared Savings Program, 27 ACOs have entered into agreements with Medicare to take responsibility for the quality of care furnished to individual beneficiaries in return for the opportunity to share in any savings with the Medicare program for improved care.

The Shared Savings Program was created as part of the Affordable Care Act, the health care reform law of 2010, to better coordinate care for Medicare patients through ACOs. Instead of patients having to navigate the complex health system on their own, these ACOs will work hand-in-hand with patients to ensure patients do not slip through the cracks. ACOs will encourage providers to work more closely together than ever before and offer incentives to providers that better coordinate a patient’s care and treat patients across care settings—including doctors’ offices, hospitals, and other health care settings. The Shared Savings Program is not a Medicare Advantage plan or an HMO. Beneficiaries with fee-for-service Medicare will still have the right to use any doctor or hospital who accepts Medicare, at any time.

Today’s announcement is the culmination of a comprehensive selection process that began in the fall of 2011 with the national release of the Medicare Shared Savings Program application by CMS. Hackensack Physician-Hospital Alliance ACO was selected based on rigorous eligibility criteria and program requirements.

About Hackensack University Medical Center
HackensackUMC, a non-profit teaching and research hospital located in Bergen County, New Jersey, is the largest provider of inpatient and outpatient services in the state. This 775-bed facility has gone beyond traditional thinking by creating an entire campus of care, including: the Heart & Vascular Hospital, the John Theurer Cancer Center, the Joseph M. Sanzari Children’s Hospital, and the Donna A. Sanzari Women’s Hospital. As a result of using science and creativity to push medicine further, HackensackUMC has been named one of America's 50 Best Hospitals by HealthGrades® for six years in a row - the only hospital in New Jersey, New York, and New England to receive this honor. The medical center has been named to the Leapfrog Top Hospitals List, received 17 Gold Seals of Approval™ by the Joint Commission,  is ranked in Cancer, Cardiology and Heart Surgery, and Geriatrics by U.S. News and World Report's "2011-12 Best Hospitals" list, is ranked in eight specialties on U.S. News & World Report’s “Best Hospitals Metro Area Top 10,” is listed as one of the 50 Best Hospitals in America by Becker’s Hospital Review, and is a Magnet® recognized hospital for nursing excellence, the first hospital in New Jersey and second in the nation. The Joseph M. Sanzari Children’s Hospital is the first hospital in the State of New Jersey ever to be ranked in a Best Children’s Hospitals specialty by the U.S. News & World Report’s “2011-12 Best Children’s Hospitals” list. The medical center is the hometown hospital of the New York Giants and the New Jersey Nets, and remains committed to its community through fundraising and community events.



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